I was lucky enough to work with our shop manager, Tony Hewitt, who had been with the company for 50 years. His eye for detail and experience were priceless. The shop, being right next door to the parish church in the market place, was always a regular stop of for parents dropping their student sons and daughters off at the Royal Agricultural College. The fathers would buy the brightly coloured corduroys (bright apple green and pink were two top sellers) while the mothers stocked up on Tattershall check shirts.
My favourite area was the upstairs suit department overlooking the lovely market place. Gentlemen would come in asking for help as they needed a suit. It was wonderful to advise people and see the end result be it a first interview suit or tails for their wedding. When I left Pakemans I knew this was the area I would miss most. Then I met Norton and Townsend. I have been with them longer than I was at Pakemans. No two days or weeks are the same. I can be seeing lawyer in his/her high rise office in Bristol between conference calls or travelling to the home of a busy sports commentator on his one day off a week. From Lords and ladies to CEOs of top companies. My clients are busy professionals in a broad spectrum of businesses who need an excellent service at a time and place to suit them.
Often I see clients after work at home where they can relax and show me what they currently have in their wardrobes. Having their partners there to advise on cloth selection can be a bonus, too. Others prefer to keep their partners out of the process entirely and prefer to be seen during work hours. With people such as race horse trainers I have to be out of their way really quickly as they have so much to do and always on a tight time scale. You have to understand your client and their lifestyle really well to help advise them on the right cloth for the job they do or the image they need to portray. You really need to listen and understand what they need from their clothing. Some people travel extensively and still need to arrive fairly crease free at meetings. We have cloths especially designed for such occasions such as Crispaire or Cape Horn High Twist by top fabric house Holland and Sherry of Savile Row. Tomorrow I am seeing an older gentleman who feels the cold. He has requested a three piece suit in Harris Tweed. Other people run very hot in our milder climate and wear a much lighter weight suit to the office or lighter weight DJ for those lengthy awards dinners.
My personal current favourite cloth is mohair. It has come back into popularity recently with TV shows such as Mad Men and the retro revival. It is a wonderful strong cloth that gives a very sharp edge to a garment. The fibres are hollow making it cool in Summer and warm in Winter. It’s an expensive fabric but as I wear it all year round I think it’s worth it. I have a three piece French navy pinstripe suit that makes me feel very smart and very much sleeker than I actually am! A well tailored suit can deceive the eye and minimise our least favourite attributes while maximising on our better assets! At least as a woman with a short inside leg I can wear stripes and heels.
Recently, I have noticed a move away from stripes towards a very much “ less is more” style of suit. Plain grey is very popular with some fabulous top quality finishes available. The styles are pared down, too, with slimmer fitting trousers and neater jackets. Velvet is always popular at this time of year with some wonderful colours available. Simple single button jackets with fabulous linings look great with dinner trousers for a formal occasion or more dress down with jeans for a more casual look when you’re want to look as if you’re not trying too hard. Ladies often like to buy their husband’s something special like this for a present to smarten their men up or for a “ special birthday”. As for accessories, a woven tie or quality cufflinks always impress me. A woven tie gives such a nice knot. With our bespoke shirts offering so many different styles of collars it’s a pity not to have a beautiful tie to complete the picture. A double cuff shirt, showing just enough below the jacket sleeve, with super cuff links says that you have really thought your outfit through. Attention to detail and a little thought go such a long way in tailoring.’
Book an appointment with Debbie now – 0845 200 2510